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boy coming reeling home drunk from a legalized saloon who declares that the saloon traffic lets her alone, although she lets it alone!
Is God dead? Has manhood left the nation forever? Are we an army of cowards? Or will we say, from this hour, God helping us, we will buckle on the whole armor of Alınighty God, and in His name, and in His power, we will take a stand alongside of the mothers and the children of our land; and with the ballots which execute the will of the people, we will bury this home and soul-destroying business beyond the hope of resurrection?
A LEGITIMATE “STRIKE."
FRANCES E. WILLARD.
ANY and urgent are the questions that the working
inen and women of to-day must help to decide. But whatever may be said of methods in general, and of special methods, as strikes, in particular, as a temperance woman, I am confident that the best strike is to strike against the saloon, and then to strike against all politicians and parties that do wrong to the working men. Those are the two strikes that
There are enough saloons in America, if they were set in a row, and one should go from Chicago
from Chicago to New York City direct by rail—there are enough saloons to keep one company withont a break in a street reaching from Chicago to New York. In the eleven mountain States of the Union, in the West, there is a saloon for every forty-three voters. The boycott of the saloon is the greatest thing and the most helpful thing that has ever come to the Knights of Labor, or any similar organization.
In one of the towns of Illinois, a banker put his private mark on the money he paid out on Saturday night to the wage-workers of the town who patronized his bank; and on
Monday night, of the $700 paid out, and marked privately, over $300 had come back to him from the saloons of that town! There is nothing that cramps, belittles and dwarfs the possibilities of the labor movement in America like the saloons.
Legitimate traffic is like the oak-tree; in its branches the birds gather and make their pleasant music, under its shade the weary herds and flocks find rest and shelter. There is nothing living, hardly, that can not get good out of an oaktree. It is like legitimate industry; every other industry is benefited and helped by it. But the liquor traffic is like the upas tree, forsaken by every living thing because it is the deadly foe of every living thing, and drips, not dew, but poison.
The labor question is a wonderful and mighty issue, but wage-workers would do well to study with it the temperance question, the prohibition question—do well to remember that nine hundred millions a year are expended by our people in Anierica across the counters of the saloons and in the liquor traffic-nine hundred million dollars, to say nothing of the money that is lost by those who would be at work except for the temptation of the saloon.
If the women of the nation had the ballot, they and the good men of the nation would hold the balance of power. As white ribboners, we believe that these great reforms must come in through the ballot-box, We believe that, because they are physically weaker, women, by the very instinct of self-protection, are the enemy of the liquor shops, because the manly arm that was meant to be their protection when uncontrolled by the guiding brain, and frenzied by alcohol, becomes their dread. We believe it does not make any difference whether a woman is a Protestant or a Catholic, whether she is black or white, cultured or ignorant, native or foreign born; we believe that, as a rule, women, for the sake of protection for themselves, their children and their homes, stand solidly against the dramshop. We believe that prohibition will come whenever woman has the ballot. Many people
say they do not believe in a paternal government. But we believe in a paternal and a maternal government, and that if a few more women had something to do with affairs, there would not be so many white slaves.
SOME DELUSIONS OF HIGH LICENSE.
REV. HERRICK JOHNSON, D.D.
we are cursed by the traffic in strong drink, a delusion and a shain.
The first is that high license gilds the traffic with a certain air of respectability, and behind gilded vice the most danger lurks. The more outwardly respectable you make the saloon the worse you make it. The assault upon morals and manhood is then subtle, insidious, treacherous. It is not your open, outrageous, infamous sinners that do the most harm. It is not the besotted and loathsome drunkard, swinging from his drinks to the gutter and crawling from the gutter back again to his drinks, who tempts wayward feet to the folly and filth of intoxication. The saloons that keep up appearances, that put on a pretence of virtue, that claim to be decent in conduct, and law-abiding—it is these that play the mischief with our young men.
High license tends to give them the guise of respectability. Five hundred or one thousand dollars paid to the Government for the privilege of doing a certain thing gives to the one doing it a kind of dignity, and inevitably stamps the thing done as business of some considerably increased importance and worth. High license may possibly, though only temporarily, wipe out a few low groggeries. But it gilds the saloons it authorizes. It gives them gloss and outward decency. Not one inherent evil of the traffic is smitten by it. On the contrary, it places over the whole brood of evils a broader brand of legitimacy. And painting vice, we all know, is bad business. To give respectability to an iniquitous thing is to buttress it more securely. Reform by that road is downhill.
Revenue gotten on such terins—the blood of duped and betrayed victims will cry from the ground against it.
My second point is that high license induces the saloonkeepers to resort to other evils to make good their loss by it. They are going to get back their license fee. That thousand dollars must come back into their till. They have not gone into the business on philanthropic principles, for the good of society. They will, therefore, adulterate their liquors. They will vitiate their stock. Ah, if they would only water itliterally, water it! But water is the last thing they or their patrons want in it. There is no sting in water. Nothing to bring the drinker back to his glass. So they ply the stock with cheap drugs. They swell its dimensions. They make its bulk large by their vile decoctions. And it finds its way down men's throats at ten cents a glass, smooth and pleasant to the sense, only to prove at last the very poison of death; often making of men physical and moral wrecks, shattering nerves, stealing away brains, and deadening conscience.
But this is not all. Under the pressure of high license, and to make the establishment pay back that large fee, saloon-keepers are tempted to introduce other features, to marshal other forms of vice, and to link gambling with liquor-selling so as to swell the receipts.
My third point is that high license leaves the fountain untouched while trying to dam up some streams. The evils of this traffic that so curse society and home do not commonly start in the vile, disgusting dens where there is only raggedness and filth. They are born farther up. Suppose you shut a few of the low dramshops. They will inevitably be opened again. The wash of the upper saloons must go somewhere. The respectable varieties need the low groggeries to take care of their cast-off rubbish. The poor, doomed victims of drink, robbed of their manhood and decency, if they step down hill must find the saloon down hill. They will find it. That stream of descending lust and filth must have an outlet. If
If you would stop it, you must go to the top and break up the fountain. Prohibition is the word, not license. You can not trust men with this thing any more than you can trust them with dangerous explosives. Prohibition is ever strengthening its own restrictions. License of every kind, low or high, is ever weakening its own restrictions. Prohibition thunders “No," to every evil of the traffic. License keeps the door open for all the evils to enter in, and issues a kind of standing invitation to them. Prohibition tends to victory by its enforced denial. License tends to defeat by its legalized indulgence.
It is said, high license will at least shut up the unlicensed saloons; for those who have paid so heavily for their license will prosecute in self-defence. This is the absurdest of fallacies. Here are three good reasons why: First, the house of the liquor-dealer will not divide against itself. Secondly, the higher liquor-dealers are mostly violators of the law themselves. Many of them sell to drunkards; sell to minors; sell on Sundays. They live in glass houses, and they will not throw stones. Thirdly, they need these low saloons to take their refuse. They want these stations down hill, to get their own victims out of the way when they are done with them. The brotherhood is too close. Saloon-keepers will not turn prohibitionists, as against their own clan.
My fourth point is that high license is a failure in practice. It increases revenue, but it does not lessen saloons nor change their real character. It puts more dollars into city and county treasuries, but it does not smite and destroy the dreadful evils of traffic in strong drink. Men are sometimes content with it because it helps pay taxes.
But does that make it a success ? Here is the logical process. Grog-shops confessedly make criminals. Criminals necessitate police. Police cost money. High license makes the grog-shops pay the money. In that vicious circle crime is made its own successor. It says to the saloon-keepers, “Go on perpetuating crime